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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: David J. Dries, MD (University of Minnesota Medical School)
Description: This book is devoted to the acute problems of the elderly.
Purpose: Recognizing the shift toward an aging population, the editors intend to better equip practitioners dealing with these patients.
Audience: The geriatrician, internist, or intensivist treating the elderly patient is an appropriate audience for this work. Practitioners in multidisciplinary intensive care units may also benefit. The majority of authors are Los Angeles-based with association to UCLA and King-Drew medical centers.
Features: Four parts and 25 chapters are included in the 500 pages of this hardbound text. General content includes issues specific to treating the geriatric patient, especially basic drug dosing and nursing care. Surgical emergencies constitute the second group of chapters with general comments on anesthesia management, trauma, and abdominal and vascular problems. Medical emergencies are included in the third cluster of chapters while a in a fourth group of chapters issues specific to aging are addressed, including elder abuse and neglect. Chapters are written in a consistent outline form and ample use is made of black-and-white line drawings and tables, which reproduce well. Reference quantity with individual chapters is inconsistent but most references date to at least two to three years from the time of publication. References cited tend to represent original work. In the table of contents chapters are grouped as described above and contributors' names are listed. A detailed subject index of 30 pages concludes the book.
Assessment: This book fills an important niche as we come to grips with our aging society. Organization is insightful with early emphasis on factors which make the relationship between practitioner and patient unique in the geriatric population. At times, however, physiologic descriptions of disease are dated and proposed treatment strategies incomplete. Still, the impact of these limitations is insufficient to diminish my interest in this book.